Posted by: Andee / Category: , , , ,

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has a long history of limiting equal rights, and going out of it's way to keep it that way.

Many prophets and other church leaders claimed that those with dark skin were cursed by God for being less valiant than white-skinned people in the pre-existance.  It baffles me how leaders of any church can judge people for things that happened before they were even born.  Not only is there no proof that dark skinned people were cursed, there is no proof of the pre-existance at all.

These same so-called prophets of God also taught that those with dark skin would only go to heaven if they went as slaves to un-cursed white people in the Celestial Kingdom.  That was all they could strive to be... sick, huh?  They also claimed that if dark skinned people accepted the gospel into their heart their skin would grow lighter.  Not only is that impossible, it's insulting.  All skin colors are beautiful, and skin color has nothing to do with a person's character.

When I was growing up, these things were never mentioned to me.  I was born in 1979, and African Americans couldn't hold the priesthood until 1978.  Many converts and children learning Mormon history from missionaries or neighbors have no idea this happened at all.  All mentions of this doctrine has been magically erased from church materials in hopes that it would all *poof* and go away.  Not likely.

Once the church was threatened with loosing it's tax-exempt status, they suddenly received revelation to allow everyone (except women, of course) the ability to hold the priesthood.  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints had to be forced to do this.  Remember that, please.  The timing alone is enough to prove it to me.

What upsets me the most about this doctrine (and don't let anyone convince you it wasn't doctrine... it was) is that the leaders of the LDS Church still claim that the past prophets were doing God's will.

That is right ladies and gentlemen... you read it correctly... They believe and teach (only when asked) that God wanted the past prophets and leaders to make these racist comments, say horrible things, and judge dark skinned people for a reason we "just don't understand right now."

I don't know about anyone else, but the God I believe in is kind and loving.  He wouldn't want any of us to suffer in this way.  My God wouldn't do that.  Ever.

Brigham Young was once quoted saying that if an interracial relationship were to ever happen, or "mix seed" the punishment would be death on the spot, he also claimed that "it would always be so."  Ummm... first of all, he was wrong.  Some prophet.  Secondly, does this sound like a man that God would choose as a prophet?  Does he sound like a man who deserves to have a university named after him?  Brigham Young was a horrible excuse of a human being.

We now know enough about science and biology to realize that skin color is simply genetic.  The closer to the sun you are, the more melanin you have in your skin to protect you from the harmful effects of the sun.  It's easy to see, isn't it?  After all, this is how people get sun tans in the summer...

It makes me wonder... If the Church still followed this outrageous doctrine and I went to Maui on vacation and came back with a killer tan, would they assume I did something wrong?  Did I become cursed with dark skin?  It's laughable, isn't it?  Yet people are willing to trust that these men were acting on the will of God and make excuses for the things they said.  

Not a single person has received an apology for the racist comments and doctrine, and they never will.  Apologizing would require them to admit they were wrong, and if they were wrong then, they can be wrong now.  Their goal is to make people trust them and obey them no matter what, and apologizing would raise the eyebrows of believing members.  It's clear to anyone who looks beyond the surface that they can't be trusted at all.

Women in the church are far from equal.  It's one of the main reasons I decided to resign on election day...

I personally believe that this started with Joseph Smith.  Let's face it... he was a charming man who convinced people he was a prophet of God... and he loooooved the ladies.  He had the power and the charm to convince people that God commanded him to take more than one wife.  Women became objects required to reach the Celestial Kingdom...

Polygamy was another doctrine that was dropped because they were forced.  The United States Government demanded that the Church stop plural marriage if Utah was to become a state.  Even after this "revelation" came, plural marriages were still taking place in secret.  So much for that article of faith claiming to obey the law, huh?

Aside from the issue of women being treated like objects, things to be collected, the Church clearly broke the law.  Polygamy of any kind anywhere, was illegal... and most of the church's claims of persecution came from people objecting to this practice.  Young girls were being married off to much older men, and it pissed a lot of people off... as it should.  It had nothing to do with Satan trying to bring down the "one true church" at all.  It was their own actions that brought the trouble.  It's a lovely little faith-promoting spin they put on it, isn't it?

Anyway... back to the issue.

Women are far from equal in the church.  It starts with the Priesthood.  The Church claims that men should be allowed to hold the priesthood, while women cannot.  Why?  I mean, is there really a decent reason?  Just 'cause I'm a girl?

If the church were a business (and they are, but thats another topic for another day) women would be really pissed off about this.  For example, lets say an employer gave certain benefits to only men.  Would that be right?  Hell no!  Yet, when the Church does it and claims it's the way God wants it, everyone takes their word.

I just don't see the logic or reason in this.  It makes no sense, yet people go along with it.  I long for the day that women in the church stand up for themselves and demand the same things that men are allowed to do.

Women cannot be bishop, stake president, or any other high leader.  They are limited to the roles priesthood leaders give them.  Women cannot hold a higher calling than a man.  Why?  Are we not as smart?  Not as spiritual?  I mean, there has to be some reason... right?  Once again we are told what our place is, and if you don't obey, there is a price to pay.

Women have no control over church finances or any other buisness the church has.  It is all left to the men.  There is no logical reason for this.  Yet, there is no outcry.

When little boys and girls are growing up in the Mormon faith, they are taught what they should do with their lives.  Men go on missions, girls practice to be stay at home Moms.  It's true.  There are actual classes and lessons to teach teenage girls how to cook, clean, take care of a home, shush a crying baby, and do it all with a smile on her face.  Well, a smile and a bottle of Prozac.  This isn't something they did in the past.  It's going on right now.  It's something out of a 50's movie.

Every time I get angry and rant about this, I have to add this disclaimer:

There is nothing wrong with being a stay at home mother... or a stay at home father.  That's the thing.  Gender determines your entire life in the church, and fitting into that role that cast you in might make you very unhappy.  It's not really fair to a young woman who wants a career, or doesn't want to have children.  This happened to me.  I felt guilty for too long for not following my "Heavenly Father's Plan."  It wasn't until I realized it was a load of crap that I felt good about myself... and that is a shame.  I beat myself up for way too long.

Try explaining to a little girl why she can't pass the sacrament on Sunday.  Try explaining to a young mother why she can't bless her own child, or even be in the circle of the prayer.

There is no equality.  None.  Anything said to dispute that is lip service.  Actions speak louder than words, and they haven't changed, have they?

Now to the equality issue that bothers me the most...

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints has asked it's members to donate time, money and talents to ban gay marriage.  The church claims that they are "protecting the family."

Since when does the Mormon Church, or anyone else for that matter, get to decide what is or isn't a family?  What right do they have to limit the rights of people that don't even belong to their faith?

The church spends a lot of time talking about testimonies and how important they are, so I would like to share mine:

I have been blessed with friends of all colors, gender, and sexual orientation.  I love all of my friends equally, and they deserve the same chance at happiness and success that I do.  I wouldn't be who I am today, without them.

A person cannot decide to be gay or straight.  It's just a part of who they are... just like eye color or skin color.  It's not something that can be changed, and it's definitely not something that should be changed.  

Many claim that homosexuality is a sin, and you know what?  It's your right to think that... but it's not your right to make that decision for everyone else.  Two grown people who fall in love and choose to spend the rest of their lives together should be able to get married.  You don't have to like it, you don't have to love it, but you have to accept it.  They are not hurting you, or your old fashioned view of your family.  They are just living their life, and you have no right to control that.

Everyone on this planet deserves happiness as long as they are not infringing on the rights of others.  That is exactly what the Mormon Church is doing.  Why do they feel they have the special right to tell everyone else how to live?

One more thing I would love to bring up...

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints says it is doing this for moral reasons.  I, personally, believe the practice of baptism for the dead is immoral.  If they get to pick and choose what others should do, they should get a taste of their own medicine.

How would they feel if a large group got together to bad baptistm for the dead?  We could get a giant phone network going... couldn't we?  Span out and spread the word...

Just sayin...

I would like to ask those who agree with what I had to say, to add their letter to the signingforsomething.org website letting the leaders of the Mormon Church know what they are doing is wrong.  

We can't stand by and do nothing.  We can't.